Battered Spouse, Children & Parents

As a battered spouse, child or parent, one may file an immigrant visa petition under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), as amended by the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).
The VAWA provisions in the INA allow certain spouses, children, and parents of U.S. citizens and certain spouses and children of permanent residents (Green Card holders) to file a petition for themselves, without the abuser’s knowledge. This allows victims to seek both safety and independence from their abuser, who is not notified about the filing.

Those eligible to file:

  • Spouse: if one is or was the spouse of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident abuser may file.
  • Parent: if one is a parent of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident abusive son or daughter may file.
  • Child: if one is an abused child under 21, unmarried and has been abused by U.S. citizen or permanent resident parent may file.